Sunday, March 10, 2013

Just Another Brick In The Wall.

Clio brick yard north of Flint. The photo just above this one is showing a one day output of bricks and is from the Buick 50th anniversary book put out in 1953. I'm not sure about the identity but it does show the early air drying method mentioned in the story below of the Sandstone Company.  There were brick making establishments all over the state and country at that time, because the raw materials could be found most anywhere. The first brick building in Flint  got it's raw material very close to this site at the foot of Church Street, very near the banks of Thread creek. When I was younger you could see these depressions where the clay and sand had been removed only we did not know what they were for. By the way, the first brick building erected in Flint is believed to have been the old "Scotch Store" at the corner of  Second Avenue and North Saginaw Street according to the book "The Picture History Of Flint" by noted local historian Lawrence Gustin ,which even includes a later photo from that 1852 time period. It was a substantial three story building.
Grand Blanc brick yard very near the Flint Sandstone brick Company.
This article was in the Wolverine Citizen on July 24, 1909. I have read many such articles from this time period and unlike today people would keep the skulls and other bones on display even going as far as keeping a skull on their desk. Today the whole site would be shut down and sometimes even closed permanently, in many cases.
The new Buick factories used a lot of these sandstone bricks in their original factories. They were soft and you could easily scratch words into them. Salt used in the winter months was especially degrading on these old bricks. There were still plenty of these old buildings around the Buick complex right up until the end.
A 1916 history.
The 1922 Flint City Directory's listing for the brick co. 
The arrow shows the entire area occupied by The Flint Sandstone  Brick co. in 1920. On the map you can see that they also had access across the street to the east even along Tobias Street. Ex Mayor Don Williamson runs a recycling facility there now. When I was young that was where we all took our scrap metal and turned it into money.
As you see in this current map Deming Road was later changed to south Grand Traverse St. This was done when the two were connected at the corner where I once lived on Ninth and Grand Traverse St.

The arrow points to the area that was occupied by the Flint Sandstone Brick Co. In the southwest of Flint. When it was in operation this was outside the city limits.

The caption says Sandlime but the sign on the building says Sandstone.

A piece of marble (top) from the facade of the main office at Buick on the corner of Industrial and Hamilton Avenues. They also used black granite for accent. The red tinged brick (bottom) is from the assembly plant #04 located just across the intersection from the main office.  The assembly plant was originally called the new large sheet metal plant for Buick just after World War II. This was the last factory my father would work in before he died in 1966.  Link:  

Factory #04 1947 

Leonard Thygesen who has recorded the demolition done at Buick and preserved it all on film  and photographs gave me these mementoes from the demolition. On the right is a brick from the assembly plant #04 built in 1946-1947. It was demolished in 2002. Go to the following link: 

Factory #04 Collage  The white marble on the left is from the Buick World Headquarters in Flint or building #01, some knew it as the Buick administration building  or the main office, some even called it The Ivory Tower or the Marble Palace. It opened in 1968 and closed completely in 2003.  Demolition took place between 2005- 2006.  Go to the following links: Buick world Headquarters at Flint Michigan  The last Headquarters In Flint, Michigan.   Go here to order from Leonard. Shown below is a piece of the black granite used for accentuating the white marble. This is from Leonard's personal collection.


No comments: